Jump to content
Kupepe

21st century film photography ... not that simple

Recommended Posts

Advertisement (gone after registration)

Hello,

One year of shooting with my father's film camera. It is supposed to be a good lens/body combo .. I see it in other people's photographs ... can't see it on mine.

After some discussions with professional photographers in the area i live, I discovered that due to the small market for film photography the simplicity of film photography (aperture, ISO, Shutter speed), is actually a 5-side cube (aperture, iso, shutter speed, film development and scanning).

People developing the film might not have the chemicals needed or they may be expired and the scanners used are crap and they don't really care so pictures come out with too much contrast or grain. Good photo shops charge like 5 euro per good scan (Hasselblad or Nikon machines) ...

 

Taking into consideration that I am saving for an M6 with a 50 mm Summicron I don't want the quality of the glass to be destroyed by film development and scanning.

So I decided to develop my own B&W and buy a good scanner to have total control of end result, after the learning curve is conquered.

Developing the B&W will start soon ... buy what I would be interested to hear is some opinion for scanners.

Don't want to use a flatbed, since i don't have the space.

I also read some reviews about the Plusteks and it seems that for the same money I could get something used in good order making better scans. I do understand that its the software that makes the scans but hardware is the base.

I shoot B&W, except for summer vacations with family.

So my shortlist is based on preference:


Konica Minolta’s DiMAGE Scan Elite 5400 II (used)
Reflecta Proscan 10t (new)
Nikon Coolscan 5000 (used)
Plustek Opticfilm 8100 (new)


What road did u choose?

Would like to hear from people with hands on experience.

 

Posted the same post on Digital processing thread. Feel free to delete if this is not the correct thread.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Good call Kupepe - keeping the process in your own hands is far more satisfying, and it future proofs you to some degree to any change in the level of services offered elsewhere.

 

I have a Nikon scanner, and used a 5000 for some time - a terrific little scanner. If you get one - in fact no matter what scanner you get, I'd advise using Vuescan software and buy (via download) a book called The Vuescan Bible. Also, there is plenty of discussion on scanner settings, and plenty of people willing to help, on the "I Like Film" thread.

 

Best of luck with it - I don't think you'll ever look back once you really get into it. In the meantime, I'd be tempted to send just one roll to a lab that has a very good reputation (even if outside your own area/country), and be prepared to spend a little more to get that roll processed and scanned to a high level - I think that may assuage any doubts you have about the quality you'll be able to obtain once you've gained some experience yourself.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have a flatbed and Plustek. The flatbed is an Epson, so I can scan my M/F negs.

The Plustek 8100 is a great scanner, mine was used, and little money, so why not try one if you can find one used. Even new though they are not that expensive.

Konica/Minolta and Nikon are good, possibly better, but if they fail they become expensive paperweights. I had a Minolta and tried myself to reduce the internal dust and stuffed it.

Either way, whatever you do, it can be changed/sold/adapted later on so just dig in and get started.

Gary

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Here’s what I done to enjoy film in this day and age. My Leicas are not new. The newest one in fact is the Null Series Reissue. Scanner? Why bother? Enlargers done that job for decades and they have not disappeared....at least on eBay. Mine is one I had from the 1970s, a Federal which worked, and still works, awesome. I guess my point is if you want to shoot BW film there’s still no reason to abandon the methods used with Great success for years and years.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Advertisement (gone after registration)

Here’s what I done to enjoy film in this day and age. My Leicas are not new. The newest one in fact is the Null Series Reissue. Scanner? Why bother? Enlargers done that job for decades and they have not disappeared....at least on eBay. Mine is one I had from the 1970s, a Federal which worked, and still works, awesome. I guess my point is if you want to shoot BW film there’s still no reason to abandon the methods used with Great success for years and years.

If he doesn't have enough room for a flatbed scanner, I doubt if there's room for an enlarger.

 

Each to their own - I'm happy both with scanning and wet printing.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have a flatbed and Plustek. The flatbed is an Epson, so I can scan my M/F negs.

The Plustek 8100 is a great scanner, mine was used, and little money, so why not try one if you can find one used. Even new though they are not that expensive.

Konica/Minolta and Nikon are good, possibly better, but if they fail they become expensive paperweights. I had a Minolta and tried myself to reduce the internal dust and stuffed it.

Either way, whatever you do, it can be changed/sold/adapted later on so just dig in and get started.

Gary

 

 

 

Hi, Gary.  I was at the same crossroads as Kupepe except I have room for a flatbed.  My research led me to an Epson 600 for now and then later a Plustek .  The Epson is mid-quality but relatively inexpensive (<$200) and you can scan multiple images at once.  I'll use the Plustek for shots I want to get more serious with since I read it has much better resolution.  

 

I'm still working on my film developing and scanning workflow.  Once it becomes more efficient I'll venture into different films and development times.  

 

Kupepe, good luck on progress.  

 

Ray

Edited by RayD28

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I recommend to skip digital approach with film. Forget about pixels and resolution.

Scanning is not film photography. Scanning makes it close to digital by the way it looks. But, if negative is good, scanning is nothing special.

I would exclude old ones, like Minolta and Nikon. Too old for been supported and work with current OS without workaround involved. 

 

I found what Epson flatbed is the best for BW. It scans upto 12 frames in the batch and it just works fine in auto. And no special software is needed. 

I print on 8.5x11 (Letter) heavy matte paper and it is fine.

Epson flatbed (V500) scans comes with less unnecessary details on negative (scratches, dust) comparing to Plustek 8100 which is great for C-41 films (but much slower due to manual operate).  

 

Printing could be done with small enlarger (even portable) on postcard sized paper, developing in tiny trais, washing in regular sink. It was done by many in the bathroom.

It will give different and native results for that BW negative is meant to be for.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Which ever scanner is used, what is the best destination file format for best workflow/results?

Richard

 

Tiff - as it is uncompressed.  As and when you are happy with the result and want to upload to the web, 'save as' or export as a .jpg of suitable size & resolution.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Which ever scanner is used, what is the best destination file format for best workflow/results?

 

TIFF, compressed is okay because TIFF compressed is lossless. Often there are two compression choices, TIFF or LZW. Take your pick. They are each lossless.

Edited by pico

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I recommend to skip digital approach with film. Forget about pixels and resolution.

Scanning is not film photography. Scanning makes it close to digital by the way it looks. But, if negative is good, scanning is nothing special.

I would exclude old ones, like Minolta and Nikon. Too old for been supported and work with current OS without workaround involved. 

 

I found what Epson flatbed is the best for BW. It scans upto 12 frames in the batch and it just works fine in auto. And no special software is needed. 

I print on 8.5x11 (Letter) heavy matte paper and it is fine.

Epson flatbed (V500) scans comes with less unnecessary details on negative (scratches, dust) comparing to Plustek 8100 which is great for C-41 films (but much slower due to manual operate).  

 

Printing could be done with small enlarger (even portable) on postcard sized paper, developing in tiny trais, washing in regular sink. It was done by many in the bathroom.

It will give different and native results for that BW negative is meant to be for.  

 

Wish I had a room for developing and printing with an enlarger. Maybe at some point in the future when the family moves to a larger house

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

OK.

Just to show you. It is plywood as table, one part of it is on the toilet another is on the storage plastic container.

 

/applications/core/interface/imageproxy/imageproxy.php?img=https://farm4.staticflickr.com/3696/11135351553_d3fcf9ce5d_o.jpg&key=4f04e565c2c811ad0de71a7db7d9c725a00fba6c0a337917312b5aa9582a169e">

 

Even smaller enlargers are available. Almost like table lamp.

 

For scanner, printer route on space saving , I recommend Plustek scanner (they are very small) and Epson C88+ printer (also small). 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I use the Plustek Opticfilm 8100 (new), excellent and have had some fun scanning old sildes as well .... if you want to play with old prints, then a flatbed is obvously needed. Plustex is excellent and as noted above TIFF .....

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

OK, my next question.........As I begin to define my workflow for colour negative films, which print method would produce the best printed output - scan/digitize/epson inkjet printer , or darkroom/enlarger/wet prints.

I should mention that years ago I did all my own B/W develop and enlarge, but never wet printed anything in colour. It is my intention to get film developed by Lab, at least initially.

Richard 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

OK, my next question.........As I begin to define my workflow for colour negative films, which print method would produce the best printed output - scan/digitize/epson inkjet printer , or darkroom/enlarger/wet prints.

I should mention that years ago I did all my own B/W develop and enlarge, but never wet printed anything in colour. It is my intention to get film developed by Lab, at least initially.

Richard 

 

Colour negative films are as easy to process at home as B&W film, using the same equipment just different chemicals. It's printing colour at home that is going to be the big complicated problem, unless you scan the film and print with an inkjet. A well scanned colour negative that has been well printed won't be very much different from a darkroom print, in fact it will often be better because there are more opportunities along the way to refine the colour balance. But scanning, post processing, and even inkjet printing are skill based operations, developing a colour film at the kitchen sink being the only simple process of the lot.

Edited by 250swb

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

OK, my next question.........As I begin to define my workflow for colour negative films, which print method would produce the best printed output - scan/digitize/epson inkjet printer , or darkroom/enlarger/wet prints.

I should mention that years ago I did all my own B/W develop and enlarge, but never wet printed anything in colour. It is my intention to get film developed by Lab, at least initially.

Richard

 

Only you can decide if RA4 printing is the process for you and the only way to find out is to try it. I suspect that after you have spent several hours in the darkroom wasting paper, making prints and waiting until they are dry enough to assess properly and then repeating the process of trying to get the colour balance and selective exposure right, you might throw the towel in and buy a scanner and a printer.

 

Only you can decide your own route, you may enjoy going into the darkroom at 6pm and reappearing at 6am the following morning with a passable print. My own experience is that I much prefer the increased creative options that processing and scanning offers and have a good night’s sleep, too.

Edited by Ouroboros

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...